NEPAL: Situation Report on COVID-19 and heavy rains (as of 1 November)
This report is produced by Office of the Resident Coordinator in collaboration with partners.
15 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered to date, covering 43% of people over 18 will one dose and 32.6% with two.
Heavy rains have generated a more severe impact than any 2021 monsoon event, with more deaths in one week than over the course of monsoon. Impacts are estimated to be heaviest in agriculture sector with serious implications for food security in the coming months.
Rapid assessment of crop and agricultural losses in ongoing and will inform medium term planning for Food Security Cluster.
Cholera/dysentery outbreak in two municipalities requires renewed efforts to contain with reports of cases increasing in four additional municipalities
High mobility and low testing during the ongoing festival period leaves the current picture of transmission and cases fuzzy, creating challenges for planning.
After the official end to monsoon season on 11 October, incessant rainfall, between 17-20 October across Sudurpaschim, Karnali, Lumbini and Province One triggered the heaviest floods and landslides of 2021, resulting in loss of lives, infrastructures and heavy losses and damage in the agriculture sector, especially the ready to harvest paddy crops. Humanitarian partners have been mounting a response to immediate needs and preparing to assess mid- to long-term needs in the agricultural sector, expected to have far reaching implications for food insecurity in the coming months.
In addition, a cholera/dysentery outbreak began in two municipalities of Kapilvastu in early October, and despite three weeks of active response, is reportedly spreading beyond these hotspots in four neighbouring municipalities.
At the same time, Covid-19 cases have been declining in absolute terms; however, official data is difficult to interpret due to the sharp decline in testing rates. Test positivity has increased, particularly in those areas where testing is at its lowest. As Nepal is in the middle of the biggest festival period, with high intra- and inter country mobility, the impact on transmission and true case numbers is expected to only be reliably interpreted towards to end of November.
Humanitarian partners continue to respond to the secondary impact of Covid-19 as well as the heavy rains and cholera outbreak, and take actions to mitigate a new wave of Covid-19 at this critical juncture.